Friday, December 24, 2010

Wishing You All a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

 Frankie, one of the several kittens born in the garage this year, a real sweetie!

Thank you all so much for reading this blog, I truly wish you happy holidays and a great new year.     Angela

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Tasha and Chiaroscuro

I certainly enjoyed do this portrait -- loved working on the strong contrasts!  I have lightened the dog's right eye more than was true to the darkness of the reference/lighting conditions.  I am being urged by a related onlooker to do it more for the recipient's sake.  It is a gift,  I don't think I will, if the recipient does not appreciate it as is, I will offer to do another and keep this one.

This is only 5x7, but I sure did enjoy working on it.  There are alot of colors in it, even if that is not apparent overall. Tasha does have a skin condition which leaves her thinned hair and hairless in places.  I have only hinted at it in the portrait, but did lots of layers of colors to capture it.

The use of strong light and dark contrasts in art is referred to as chiaroscuro.  If you would like to read more about chiaroscuro, you can click this link: chiaroscuro.  I could not recall how to spell this term, but first went to the Wikepedia site to look at Rembrandt, hoping to find the term, and I did.  I am surprised that Wikepedia says the Expressionists often used chiaroscuro, I always think of the Renniasance artists,  when thinking of this term.  Since the Expressionists are my favorite grouping of artists, I will have to look at this connection between chiaroscuro and the Expressionists more.

I am not sure wether or not I will do more to Lokie's portrait.  After I do some more getting ready for Christmas tasks, I may do him over if there is time. I have to clean up some dust on Tasha's background, but I think I am calling her done, also.  ( P.S.  after posting and looking at this a little more, I may be modifying Tasha's nostril's just a little to make it a little more aligned.)

Though busy getting ready for company for Christmas and a second gathering the day after, I am enjoying every day of being home lately.

Have a great weekend, thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Two Dobes WIP -- Christmas Presents

Here are Lokie and Tasha.  Lokie is probably finished, but I will look him over while working on Tasha.  I think something is a little off with Lokie, but I don't have good reference photos of him, but have met him several times.  He had an expressionist quality for a while which I may experement more with.  However, I am aiming for realism for the most part because I do not think the gift recipient will appreciat it otherwise.  I am enjoying working on the sunlit qualities in Tasha's reference photo.  

Lokie - Main Reference

Lokie - Nearly Finished Portrait


Tasha - Main Reference

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christmas Portraits Done & Good Links on Success

Here are Daisy's, the Collie,  and Izzy's,  the Cat, portraits finished:

I am enjoying some time at home before starting a tax preparation job in January.  I have finished this year's Christmas card, will share it the day before Christmas on the blog.  I will be do a couble of small portraits as a family gift. I plan to enjoy beading a necklace for a gift.  It is snowy here today and it is doubly nice being home with these two projects to work on.

I have been thinking about how to achieve better art business success. Moneywise, things seemed to go more backwards this year even with more action and effort.  I wonder if my ladder is on the wrong wall sometimes.  It could be just a step in the process of climbing.  I just don't know.  I have been reviewing seminars and consulting services -- getting some help is one of my goals for the coming year.  I did really enjoy David Barney's post on this subject today.  His post refers to two other posts on this subject, all of which are quite good.

Hope you are all having a warm, cozy and enjoyable day!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving

Hope you are all enjoying your Thanksgiving holiday!  As far as art has been going, aside from commissions, I have been doing alot more surfing, reading and imagining than doing lately.  Somewhat enjoyable and stimulating, but also sometimes feeling bloated, like eating too much choclate candy at one sitting.  Looking at 3-D as well as 2-D media -- may blog about that later.  Feeling a need to do something looser and just for fun.

I have developed a  want for more studio space, my basement is a wreck of storage, that has been bothering me anyway -- planning to really work on that this winter, but more motivated to have more space for art making (space to do other media without having to back up all my colored pencil stuff in order to have room), framing (have to use kitchen island now, with no room for storage of materials) and for storage and display.  Not that I can't create without all this, but I am feeling motivated to move toward making it a reality for the longterm at this point.

I did buy myself some early Christmas present art books, two by Claudia Nice and one by Carla Sonheim.

Again hope you are having a great holiday, see you later!  Angela

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Christmas Commissions, Part 2

Here is the Collie, Daisy, almost done.  I am giving it a rest before deciding whether or not it is finished.

I went ahead and started the cat, Izzy.  The owners say she is giving her "sweet look"  so I am really working on that.

Both portraits are 8x10, colored pencil on panel.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Christmas Commissions

I am currently working on some Christmas commissions.  Here is one of them in progress.

I have a little ways to go yet.  It is 8x10, colored pencil on pastelbord.  I am enjoying working on it.

I also have a cat to do for the same family.

Thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Longhorn Update

"Home on the Range"
colored pencil on panel

In between alot of yard work and cleaning the garage, I got to work on this some.  I entered it in the The Artist's Magazine online all media competition which had a deadline of November 1st.  Unfortunately it was getting dusky when I stopped to take a photograph of it on November first.  I seem to have lost some color and contrast.  I have darker contrastas and some reflected greens that don't show up.  I also would like to do more to it now also.  Debating what to do since I also want to get things professionally photographed yet this month in preparation for entering some of next year's art fairs.  One deadline is this month.  Hard to not touch it until the end of December.

I do have a two portrait commission for Christmas to work on as well as a this year's Christmas card, yet.  I guess I could not work on it and leave it out of my near art fair applications --- decisions, decisions.  Should have worked more on it so not up against the deadline for the competition.

Thanks for stopping by! 

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Back from Apple Butter Stirrin Festival

Facing East

Facing West

Long Horn WIP
My Cosume & Booth
Well I am back, got back yesterday afternoon, played catch-up with some animal care and did not get my camera out of the vehicle until this morning for posting.  I feel blessed to have had great weather at this festival.  It had good attendance.  I got alot of interest and promises for commissions.  Did not sell well  again though, about six greeting cards.  Quite a few men and one lady who said they would buy the eagle or the hawk if they could afford it.  The lady across from me selling dish towels with a cloth addition added onto them for draping over a kitchen drawer handle said she made the booth fees (about $100 depending on if your demonstrated or not) several times over.

There was only one other purely 2-D artist.  She is on the a national circuit and said not to think it was my art, that things have not gone well for the last two years.  She was very upset about people taking pictures of her art and then making her own prints.  She posted signs to prevent this, but as they were being ignored, by the third day, she was posting that taking a picture of a work would result in the individual being charged the cost of that work.  She was planning on calling the police if necessary.  Any thoughts on this problem of people taking photos to make their own print?

I enjoyed getting some folk art animals in trade from another vendor for one of my prints. I gave one to my mom and kept the other for myself.

I have posted the only picture I have of myself to show my costume, I think my expression is lousy, though.

I got a little further on the longhorn than I have shown here by the end of the last day, but did not get a photo, will probably update on that later this week. 
I would like to just keep working on that, but vowed to attend to some very badly needed clean-up work around the farm once the shows were done, so will be starting on that until maybe the weekend.  Thanks for stopping by!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Off to Festival Today, Hawk finished - Demo started

I finished the hawk, this is not the best photo, but best I could do this morning before I frame it to take with me to the Roscoe Apple Butter Stirrin Festival.  I am a little more behind than I had planned to be.  I made a kitty rehoming run into the city yesterday that I did not plan.  I have had so many no shows for people saying they were coming out to look at them, that I thought it was best to jump on it.  I am fretting over him though and will be calling the new home later this morning to see how things are going.  I have offered to take any back if not what they expected/having problems adjusting. 

My set up is not until 4:00 P.M., but have a lot to do before then and plan to leave about 2:00 P.M.  I wanted to work a little more on my demo that I started Tuesday, yesterday, but did not get the chance.  I am supposed to post demo times scheduled four times a day for the three days of the festival.  I like to do the experimental backgrounds I am starting to do with mineral spirits along with the colored pencil on my own -- I may not get that chance today with backing and organizing.  Will be scary to do that kind of thing in front of people, might chicken out, will see.  Anyway, here is the sketch of the demo.  I had some photos of longhorns I took this summer.  I spent hours sorting through them and messing with what composition to choose.  My sketch is a little looser than some I do before transfer, but feel o.k. with that (except for adding the background, which I plan to ad lib a bit).  It is 18x24, and as long as I don't mess it up, it will keep me busy the three days.

The set-up is until 8:00 P.M., but it will be dark by 7:30 -- so probably have to get up early tomorrow to finish up to be open by 9:30.  The show runs 10 to 6 on Friday and Saturday and 10-5 on Sunday.  The participants were asked to be ready by 9:30 though when tourist bus sometimes arrive.  I still have to work on my early 1800's garb, do barn chores, and pack.  Wish me luck and thanks for checking in!  I will post pictures of the show when I return, Monday.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Finished Portraits and Kitty Delivery Service

I emailed a copy of the finished portraits last night and they were approved.  Keep in mind they are only 3.5 by 5.5 inches  with custom requests in the compositions.  This is  a size I definitely have not done. I admire those even smaller ACEO artists all the more now.
Great Dane in Historic Home

Great Dane Puppy

I have been busy with tax prep classes and trying to find the seven kitties in the second litter homes.  I did mange to get the mother caught and spayed.  I have only found two of the kittens homes thus far, but I believe they are good homes and both have promised to update me.  I have several other possiblilities with  some no shows and not acceptable homes.  I would like to be able to get my car in the garage before it snows.  Was still doing that with the first litter, but put it outside when these seven began to waunder.

These Orange Tabby Males Are the Sweetest

One of the three Fuzzy Wuzzy Boys

Tortieshell Girl

Cute Tinie  Girl found good home

I have a fair, The Apple Butter Stirr'n Festival next week.  It will be only the second time I have put up my tent myself and the first time on concrete.  I have opted for several "cheap" weight options, though still playing with that. I hope to get there right at set up time so as not to be crowded in my tent set up, do not think there are any voluteers at this one. I am supposed to be dressed somewhat to the period of 1803, have to work on that a little too.  At least set up is the day before, no tear down will be another story. My mom nearby, so I will be staying with her.  I hope to finish the Hawk and start a really good demo before then.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Art Fair Report, Hawk WIP, Commission

A week has gone by since the Kent Art in the Park art festival.  I had a death in my family and stopped in Coshocton on the way to the festival and then stayed with my mom on the way back.

Here is an image of my booth and an image of the crowds and other parts of the festival.  It was a nice laid back place to be. Though cutting the light a bit and also leading to intermittent showers of acorns, being in the trees was quite peaceful.  I enjoyed talking to many of the festival patrons.  I drew nice crowds while drawing.  Some other artists cautioned that demoing can lose customers -- that it is really important to talk with the customers. I never ignored them totally.  However, I did draw less and talk more on the second day, it did not seem to make any difference on sales.  Total sales was 5 greeting cards.  I did expect better from such a big show.  Most artists said their sales have been steadily declining the last two years.  I do not regret the experience, but have done better at the other shows I have been in, thus far, saleswise.  Ironic, in that I really thought this was going to be my best sales opportunity yet.

I am proud that I was able to attend, set up and take down my outdoor display on my own .  I did get some volunteer help with it a few things, but know I could do it entirely on my own if I had to. 

I enjoyed meeting some other artists.  Have promises for commissions, which as usual, may or may not come through.

Below are the sketches for a commission I received at the Zanesville Y-Bridge Festival.  The finished pieces will  only br 3 1/4 by 5 and 1/4 inches.  One dog is a full grown Great Dane and the other is a Great Dane puppy.  I am relieved that the customer just approved proceeding after viewing the compositional sketches. 

Here is my hawk portrait WIP at the conclusion of Kent Art in the Park.

I still have a little ways to go with it, but am generally pleased with  it thus far.

Until next time, thanks for stopping by!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Abbey, Portrait 2, finished

Once again time has gotten away with me.  Here is the second Abbey portrait, finished.  The client is pleased.

I do have another commission to do from the Zanesville fair.  Two very small portraits, 3x6 inches, one with full body and background -- so once again I have my work cut out for me.  I will not be working on these until after the art fair in Kent, Ohio, Art In the Park,  I will be participating in this coming weekend.  The set-up is on Friday and the fair is Saturday and Sunday.  I lucked out with getting a hotel three miles away at $42 a night (EconoLodge), which is good because I am staying until Monday morning.  The show will be having an artist's dinner after closing on Saturday, the first time I have experience such a perk!  I went to undergraduate school at Kent State University, but have not been back there since.  The art festival is in a park near the University.

I have posted a few things, and will post more, on the Prismacolor gallery website.  I currently use mainly Prismacolor pencils.  While browsing there, I saw an artist who uses colored pencils very expressively while portraying animals.  Her name is Maria Spencer and I admire her style, a style very seldom seen with colored pencils.

I will be working on setting up my tent several times this week before going to the show.  I worked on it yesterday, but must become much more efficient.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Feral/garage Kitties Update & WIP

New Garage Kitties

Before I could get the mommy and her three kitties in for their spay/neuter appointment, mommy had SEVEN new kittens.  Six of them can be seen in the photo above, the seventh is an orage tabby.   Not a situation I am happy to be in, but I am determined to get the mommy in before this happens again.  I do have her eating in the unsprung live trap, but as the little kitties are just starting to waunder, it could be difficult to catch her without trapping them.  I will be working on it though.  It is frightning to have only one chance to catch her, if the life trap springs and does not catch her, it is not likely that she will go in it again, they say.

Below are some photos of the first three, now about five months.  All healthy after their spays and neuter.  They are all tame now.

Growing Up Fast - 1 of Original 3
Wild one Now Loving
Only boy of the first three

Below is a work in progress of my redo of one of my commissioned portraits.

Hopefully this will remind the owner of his dog, Abbey.  I got too caught up in doing what I thought he wanted instead of what I could do best on the first one, lesson learned.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Commissioned Portraits and Hawk WIP

Above are the last two portraits I did for the seven portrait commission.  Below is the red tailed hawk that I worked on at the art fair.  The hawk is 24 by 18. I like it so far.  I am nervous about getting started on the feathers, but looking forward to seeing if I can get it the way I want it also.  I used mineral spirits to melt colored pencil on the background.  I may modify the bacground some more after I start the feathers.

As I have a portrait commission to redo and a few nonart obligations to get out of the way, I may not get to work on it for a couple of more days.  I try to do the things I don't want to do as much first and use the thing I want to do the most as a reward.  This strategy of disciplining myself does not always work though because sometimes I procrastinate and thus lose time that I could have spent doing what I preferred to do anyway.  I have gotten alot of chores out of the way recently, though,  and may just have to reward myself a little anyway soon, even if all the have to's aren't completely done because I am getting that away from working on art withdrawal/crappy feeling.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Y-Bridge Art Fair Update

My Booth & WIP
My Booth with People & My Neighbor

Painting the Fair

I had a great time.  The crowds were alot better than last year. Though I enjoyed numerous positive comments, I did not sell as much as last year, though.    I do have one commission request to follow up on right away.  Many promises -- which do not always materialize.  I did enjoy working on my demo, a close-up of a red tailed hawk.  You can see it a little better if you double click the photo to enlarge it.   It was sometimes too hot to work on it becuase my pencils would start melting, though!

 I made friends with my neighbor, Shirley Lumbatis, an equine artist from Zanesville, whose horses you can see a bit of to the right of my booth.  She had beautiful landscapes, also.  Her work was mainly acrylic paintings, but it had th look of oil paintings.  It was great to have her as a friend during the show and I will be looking her up for lunch soon.

  There was a best presentation award of $500, but I did not get it, though most artists did not set up a complete booth like I did.

The overall quality of the art was great and fun to look at.  I greatly admired the two artists who oil painted during the festival.  In addition to scenes of the fair shown above, they did portraits of people on the spot.

When packing, I can currently fit everything but my tent side walls and top cover into my SUV. Did not need the whole tent for this fair, but I am thinking of adding a carrier on the hitch for these.

Since being back I have been way too busy with finishing my portrait commission,  some tax and social work classes, as well as getting the feral kittens spayed and nuetered.

I delivered the last six portraits Saturday.  I volunteered to redo one of them after the customer feltthat the body (one that was "made up") was not quite like his dog, though he felt the face was right on.

I'll post the last two portraits and my hawk WIP in my next two posts!

Thanks for stopping by!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Art Fair This Weekend

I am off at about noon to the Y-Bridge Art Festival in Zanesville, Ohio.  This is the second annual fair and last year's first fair was also my first art fair.  I have quite a bit to do yet to get ready, so this will be short.  Will post about it when I get back.

Have one more pet portrait to do in my series commission, a cat.  Would have preferred to have finished it before this weekend, but will work double time on it Sunday when I am back.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Trouble with blogger? Pet Portraits WIP cont'd

I have been working on this blog a little everyday. Getting instructions to change my security settings, etc. I can see my blog when I sign in, but all of my gadgets are still at the bottom, even though the design/layout feature says I have them on the side. I have been told tthis blog is not coming up properly when you try it access it. How is it working for you? If you are reading this and can let me know, I would appreciat it.

I am posting Hannah, completed, tho0ugh I may do a little last minute fussing at any time.

Trina WIP.

Hannah and Trina, thus far, are meeting my expectations of how I would like to render these dogs, more than the the earlier portrait. I did save the best reference photos for last, but I don't know if that is the total reason.

I am going to the Y-Bridge Art Festival this weekend. I would like to have all seven portraits done by Wednesday so I can look for a demo I would like to do and get ready. Of course, I will have to do these things even if I don't get the seventh portrait done before the show. It would just be nice to know I am ready to deliver them. The show and also several appointments the following week will be biting into my time quite a bit.

One of the things on my to do list next week is to take all the kitties in for neutering and spaying, I got some help from a feral cat organization with this and have an appointment. However, momma kittie just had, six I think, kittens on Friday.
OMG! I have tamed two of the three original kitties pretty well and still have hope for the third -- put everyone is saying it is near impossible to find cats/kittens homes around here these day.

Moor later. Please let me know how my blog is working for you if you can.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Hannah WIP and Wilds follow-up

Here is the current WIP for Hannah, a choclate lab. There is a little more room at the top than I was able to scan. I should finish this one today.

I did take a break Sunday and Monday and went to the Wilds,a wildlife preserve, about 50 miles from where I live, menitioned in an earlier post. Below are some of the pictures I took. I have a few nice ones, but not as many as I would like. I will post some of the others in the future.

We went for an overnight -- was nice to get away from the routine, eat some good food and visit with a friend.

On the way to the Wilds, I took a not so long side trip to visit the Leslie Cope Gallery in Roseville, Ohio. A friend of mine has some of his originals and turned me on to his work. Sadly there is not much on the net or in the literature about him. I hope to go back to this gallery, which his widow runs sometime soon as I did not see it all with the time we had. His last painting in progress was on the easel in his studio there. He is know for his farm scenes and horses, primarily, though he also did coastal scenes and murals. He was a codesigner for McCoy pottery. Roseville and the surrounding towns were once a thriving pottery center. I do not know enough about him, but I hope to find out more in the future. He was quite prolific, I really like his animals, of course, and admire his passion. I do feel fortunate to be able to visist his studio and gallery.

Lastly, I not sure I like this new blog design, I was trying to correct where the gadges (about me, links, blogrool, etc.) show up. I can only view them at the bottom of the page now, but want them at the side. Where do they show up when you look at the page? I know how I am supposed to fix this in layout, but was not working for me, so I go sidetracked in design and ended up with this one for now.


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